Joey

New Mexico Off-Road Runner

Joey

New Mexico Off-Road Runner

Bike Touring Collection by Joey

13

Tours

45:51 h

527 mi

29,650 ft

The New Mexico Off-Road Runner, created by bikepacking.com only a few years ago, is an incredible route, spanning the vast majority of the state. Typically ridden from North to South in the cooler months, we opted for South to North in our late season June trip due to rising early summer temperatures and prevailing winds, but the route is equally exquisite either way. Bouncing from small mountain range to small mountain range across the state, you find yourself crossing large frying pans of straight road, before climbing up into surprisingly lush canyons. Everyday is so wonderfully different and diverse.

The route is chalked full of history, old abandoned cabins and mines, ghost towns, old railroad grades, ranching, and Native American heritage. Time and time again I find New Mexico to be one of the most underrated and stunning areas of the United States, a place full of discovery and natural wonder.

With one of the lowest population densities in the United States, New Mexico is vast, and largely free of the crowds you find in Colorado and Utah. We were so far out there on this route, that we would sometimes go days without seeing more than a few people along the way. This fact alone added such a wonderful and calming element to the trip.

We opted to do our trip with vehicle support, which freed up our bikes to be relatively light and nimble. At our camp each night, we were able cook delicious meals and really recharge the batteries before the next big day in the saddle.

Overall, this was an incredible way to see New Mexico, and I would recommend part or all of this route to anyone looking to getting in a big adventure on the gravel bike.

On The Map

Tours & Highlights

  • 03:56
    39.5 mi
    10.0 mph
    1,675 ft
    1,225 ft

    Our first day was an incredibly hot day in the desert. We started with views of Mexico from Las Cruces as we headed north. This was probably the most technical, sandy, and challenging riding of the entire trip, and it definitely set the tone for the adventure at hand!

  • 03:20
    40.4 mi
    12.1 mph
    1,550 ft
    1,375 ft

    The highlight of our second day was most certainly rolling into Hatch from our overnight camp in the Organ Mountains and sampling the world famous Green Chili there. It really is top notch New Mexican cuisine for hungry riders!

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  • 03:12
    39.1 mi
    12.2 mph
    1,750 ft
    2,000 ft

    This really was a beautiful day without seeing a single person until dropping into the town of Truth or Consequences. Brilliantly named, this town is chalked full of character and mystery. We opted for a hotel on our third night to properly recharge the batteries.

  • 02:59
    34.3 mi
    11.5 mph
    3,300 ft
    575 ft

    On our fourth day we rode up into the Loco Mountains and stopped at the top of a pass to camp for the night. We were treated with an incredible sunset and nice mild overnight temperatures after a hot day in the blistering sun.

  • 04:03
    24.5 mi
    6.0 mph
    3,050 ft
    1,850 ft

    Probably the coolest day of the trip, from sun up to sun down. We started the day in the quaint town of Winston, filled with incredible architectural relics, before the long climb up Chloride Canyon and eventually to the fire lookout on Lookout Mountain. The day was capped off with an incredible 11 mile (18 km) swoop descent into camp where we were surrounded by giant cottonwoods.

  • 04:04
    55.3 mi
    13.6 mph
    3,925 ft
    2,850 ft

    We enjoyed a chill morning at camp reading books and cooking breakfast on the sixth day, before a long afternoon on pavement and gravel.

    The day ended with the climb up Last Bear Canyon, which was equally as lush and unexpected as Chloride Canyon the day before.

  • 02:18
    27.9 mi
    12.1 mph
    475 ft
    2,950 ft

    Another relaxed morning was spent enjoying time at camp for our friend Paul's birthday.

    We finished the climb to the summit and dropped the other side, with a primitive old forest service road in front of us. We cranked on in to Magdalena and got another hotel for the night.

  • 02:26
    43.2 mi
    17.7 mph
    1,525 ft
    2,900 ft

    This was definitely one of the hotter days of the trip. Everyone began to ride into good fitness and we were really putting the hammer down. We had a really cool stop in the ghost town of Santa Rita with the old church and saloon.

  • 06:51
    49.5 mi
    7.2 mph
    3,800 ft
    875 ft

    We woke to a fire haze on the horizon at dawn. We got up and got going before the sun to beat the heat and it was quite the treat.

    Fast grinding all morning with a beautiful climb into the Manzano Mountains in the afternoon.

  • 03:07
    60.5 mi
    19.4 mph
    3,575 ft
    5,050 ft

    This was one of our longest days milage wise, but one of our fastest too. We had a wonderful tailwind all day and some of the smoothest gravel and pavement you could imagine. Super fun day.

  • 04:01
    64.9 mi
    16.1 mph
    2,600 ft
    2,600 ft

    Another fun day from the Cibola National Forest to the edge of the Santa Fe National Forest, with a fair amount of pavement, finishing on some awesome gravel.

  • 04:00
    25.4 mi
    6.3 mph
    1,400 ft
    1,400 ft

    Gravel all day, and some of the best riding of the entire trip! We decided to veer off the main Off-Road Runner route a bit, and got a little lost in the maze of trails, but all ended up at camp somehow.

    A big day out even though it was lower milage and just about everyone ran out of water!

  • 01:34
    22.6 mi
    14.5 mph
    1,050 ft
    1,350 ft

    Super cruisy last day into Santa Fe with the whole crew!

    It was such an exciting feeling to have a 500 mile ride in the bag, with some people who had never bike toured before in the group! Solid good times all around.

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Collection Stats

  • Tours
    13
  • Distance
    527 mi
  • Duration
    45:51 h
  • Elevation
    29,650 ft

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Joey

New Mexico Off-Road Runner